I got much more positive responses from my second round of Critters than my first--mostly, I think, because Pandora's Time is a much tighter and well-written story than The French Maid. The French Maid is still giving me trouble. I started working on a complete rewrite, and I'm already stalling again. I don't think any other story I've written has gone through so many incarnations, nor caused me to fret so much over how to approach it. Hopefully I'll be happy with the end result, but right now it's sapping a lot of energy.
Pandora's Time got ten critiques, as opposed to the 25 from last time. This is probably due to the fact that Pandora's Time is 10,000 words long, twice as long as The French Maid was. Based on the responses I got, I'll probably quickly tidy up of Pandora's Time and then get it out into the world. I'm having a bit of a dilemma though: there's an anthology with an upcoming deadline that I'd like to send it to--it's called Times of Trouble and is to be full of time travel stories. It sounds like a really great fit for the story--but I just realized that Pandora's Time is over their word count limit.
I'm torn. Usually I try to follow submission guidelines to the letter, but I really feel like this would be a great fit. And it IS an anthology, meaning they'll probably have some flexibility in lengths. Do I send it anyway? And if I do, do I say "my story is over your word limit but I feel it is a good fit..." (something editors probably get regularly and cringe to hear) or do I just send it without drawing attention to the length? Gaahh! I don't know what to do!
If anybody from Critters stops by, thanks for your helpful critiques!